Understanding Intraocular Lenses

Medical science is always advancing; opening up new avenues of treatment and offering healing to conditions that were previously irreversible. Eye health is just one of many areas benefitting from the ever progressing world of medical research. Without a doubt, intraocular lenses (IOLs) are one of the greatest innovations in the world of eye correction, allowing patients to live without cataracts, and sometimes without glasses or contacts lenses. What is an IOL? An IOL is an implant designed to replace the natural lense of your eye. They can be used to cure cataracts, or to correct specific kinds of refractive errors

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Medical science is always advancing; opening up new avenues of treatment and offering healing to conditions that were previously irreversible. Eye health is just one of many areas benefitting from the ever progressing world of medical research. Without a doubt, intraocular lenses (IOLs) are one of the greatest innovations in the world of eye correction, allowing patients to live without cataracts, and sometimes without glasses or contacts lenses.

What is an IOL?

An IOL is an implant designed to replace the natural lense of your eye. They can be used to cure cataracts, or to correct specific kinds of refractive errors so the patient no longer requires glasses or contact lenses.

The Implanting Procedure

Replacing the lens of your eye is simpler than it sounds. The entire surgery usually only takes 15 minutes, and is done as an outpatient procedure. The ophthalmologist will only perform the operation on one eye at a time with a few weeks in between to ensure the lens works the way it’s supposed to.

The doctor places numbing drops in the eye and makes a small incision in the side of the eye. The natural lense will then be removed and replaced with the IOL. The incision may be closed with a small stitch.

Different Types of IOLs: Features and Functions

Your ophthalmologist will help you determine which kind of IOL is right for your needs. In addition to the basic IOLs, there are a few premium IOLs that offer different features and levels of functionality.

Aspheric IOLs

The standard IOL has a spherical shape. This shape works fine inside the eye, however it does not mimic the curvature of the eye’s natural lens. As a result, the patient may experience minor distortions in their vision, particularly when driving at night.

Aspheric IOLs are designed with a shape that closely resembles that of the eye’s natural lens. This means the patient typically experiences higher quality of vision and sharper images, particularly in low light conditions.

Toric IOLs

When you have astigmatism, you have a refractive error in one part of your eye. Where presbyopia and Myopia affect your entire eye, astigmatism impacts only one specific area of your vision. Toric IOLs are designed with different levels of magnification in different parts of the lens, making it particularly effective in treating astigmatism.

Before the procedure, the doctor marks the irregular areas on your cornea. Using this as guideline, they will then rotate the toric lens so the right level of magnification is covering the irregular area, thereby correcting the astigmatism.

Multifocal IOLs

Much like multifocal glasses, multifocal IOLs are designed to reduce your need for reading or computer glasses. These lenses feature different levels of magnification in different parts of the lense, giving you clear vision at any distance. Inserting multifocal IOLs require textbook precision, as the lenses will only work properly if they are perfectly aligned.

Choosing the Right Treatment For You

IOLs are an amazing feat of medical engineering, but they’re not right for everyone. Contact us today to ask one of our optometrists if you’re a good candidate for an IOL.

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